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Comment Re:Double time (Score 1) 68

Except no one seems to know the difference, and it's literally impossible to know an accurate time in a system involving more than one component. Accidentally make the adjustment twice and you're in as bad shape as if you hadn't made it in the first place. I E-mailed a developer about a piece of a spec that didn't specify and asked him if the time was GMT or UTC. His response was "What's the difference?" Not something you want to here from someone who maintains astronomical software. Other parts of the spec said "UTC" but they meant UTC in the POSIX sense of the word, without leap-seconds. Which isn't really UTC, now, is it?

There are better ways to achieve the same goal. Just publish the second-offset and make your adjustment explicitly when you have to. Then when someone comes along who has to maintain your system, they'll actually be able to tell.

As an aside, part of the leap-second resolution should involve finding the member of the POSIX committee responsible for that part of the POSIX spec and punching them in the forehead :-/

Comment Google Could Probably Just Take Over There Too (Score 3, Informative) 378

1) Install WIFI nodes covering the entire USA
2) Sell wireless SIP phones that connect to a massive VOIP server.
3) Profit.

Even if you only had service within city limits, you'd already be much more reliable than any cellular carrier I've ever tried. My android phone can run a SIP client and I've been kicking around the idea of just dropping the cellular contract and rolling my own solution with an asterisk server on a cloud service and a local wifi provider.

Comment Newspapers Didn't Have That Vision (Score 1) 148

That's not what newspapers were about. Giving a eulogy while the subject is still coughing up blood is a bit unorthodox, but here we go! Newspapers were low-budget operations that spent as little as possible on everything while putting ad revenue in the pockets of their owners. Next to the restaurant industry, they were the least forward-looking group of people I've ever seen. They are actually very similar to the restaurant industry in a lot of ways; labor violations abound, they never spend money on anything they don't absolutely have to and they never, ever, EVER plan for the future. Saying that a Newspaper should have developed the media application of the future is about as ludicrous as saying that McDonald's should genetically engineer the bull of the future, except that McDonald's is actually more likely to do that.

There will still be reporters and the news sites that managed to adapt enough to survive in the Internet era, but I don't think there will be print papers for that much longer. I suspect Google will be the largest employer of reporters in the future, and that they'll somehow figure out how to outsource local news reporting. Google had the kind of vision to build the media platform of the future. Newspapers didn't.

Comment Re:Please Leave the Gun Rights Debate Out Of This (Score 1) 159

The difference compared to the US is that in Switzerland, all those guns are kept at home by people who have been trained and serve(d) in the military

The guy (dead now) who shot up the Navy Yard had previously been in the military. And all he needed was a simple shotgun. The sort of thing that VP Biden says is exactly what people should own for hunting and self defense. He used that simple shotgun to shoot a military guard and gain access to that guard's handgun. He came across the rifle inside the Yard, said the Washington Post.

And no, just about nobody can buy an assault rifle. Do you mean a semi-auto rifle no different than every rancher uses to kill varmints in his cow pasture, only also equipped with black plastic parts that make no difference in lethality, but which make it look scarier to uninformed soccer moms?

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